Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Coloring Afterdead

Coloring all the black-and-white Afterdead stories for use as webcomics.

The color files can then be used on Amazon's Createspace for full-color books at a decent price.

Here's the second page of "Keeper," and the Desert Peach discovering that, wherever he may be now, there be harpies.

Friday, October 3, 2014

My Part In The New Volunteer Army

Okay, I gotta admit this.

I'm the one drew "Sam Volar."

You're going, Who? What? Huh? 

Not a big surprise. A very minor moment in military cartooning, my contribution to the Army's trying to redesign itself after it finally got it through its thick head that the draft wasn't to everybody's taste. 

It's the new face of the Volunteer Army - the people who were tired of the draftees calling them "Lifers."

And yet there is irony. You think I did this voluntarily? As the Madigan Hospital Commanding General's Little Pet Teletype Operator, I got told I was going to enter, and that was an order.

The hospital had discovered I could draw, so if any of you from 1971-73 at Fort Lewis remember the posters, cards, signs and general cartoon slathering around the post and the hospital at the time, blame me. I was as volunteered, paid-extra, trained-up as a WAC drill instructor - in other words, not at all.

However, when my cartoon was chosen for the face of the new campaign, I did get a $50 US savings bond. And to shake the hand of the Fort Lewis commanding general, who was all happy, because he liked girls so much he would even come to the WAC company teas.

Which savings bond came in handy when Sergeant Major Stines came around growling during one of the bond campaigns to know if I had a Savings Bond, and I could answer that I did.

Thank you very much, Sergeant Jerry Gift, for blowing my cover and laughing, "Sar'n Major, she WON that!"

I'm lucky I still HAVE an ass. Command Sergeant Majors have SHARP teeth.

Note: I wasn't finding anything about Sam on the internet, even though Dan says he saw him in The Stars And Stripes newspaper, while he was in Vietnam, before we met, but then I found this tiny envelope on the floor of the studio, addressed long ago to my parents - and there in the envelope was the cartoon on this page. 

I'd been sending my correspondence to San Diego State Special Collections, and this one must have slipped out. Just when I need it.

Sometimes the Gremlins are nice.

Thursday, July 17, 2014

2015 Clallam Bay Comicon Panels and Events

Caravan Road Trip: Attendees are planning car pools and caravan from Seattle. To schedule and organize, see the Facebook page. 

Horror Movie Night; Friday or Sunday (depending on body count): Bring your favorite DVD scare-fest. Because if you don't, I'll bring mine, and then it's "Prophecy 1" and "Warm Bodies." Or for something truly ghastly, guilty pleasure "Trueblood." Hallowe'en is huge up here, so it's never too early to kick off the Dark Times.

SATURDAY 10 am - 5 pm

9 am-10 am: Show set-up (if you plan to get in Friday, you must contact me about  possible early set-up).

10:am: Show officially opens.

All-Day Event: Nobody Stops Artists. Photograph yourself as the Assyrian Bull and Isis herself. Then post it where ISIS can see it.

10 am: Fun Days Parade Lineup. Those who wish to participate in the Fun Days parade, assemble at Weel Road Deli/Shell parking lot. Be fabulous. We need somebody to secure the hall if everybody else leaves. Donna has to cover the parade for local papers; she'll buy you coffee.

11 am-12 Noon: Fun Days Parade

Noon-1: Lunch break. Find Fun Days goodies, including the Lion's Club barbecue, and frybread and Indian Tacos in the bus barn. We have a kitchen. Potlucks and shairsies welcome.

5 pm: Show closes for the evening; hall locks up.

Dusk: Fireworks in Sekiu.

SUNDAY 10 am - 5 pm

10 am: Show opens.

Noon-1: Lunch break. What did you all bring?

5:00 pm: ARGGGHHH! Swab-The-Decks Event. Show closes, ALL participants  heave to and make the Lion's Club ship sparkle! Pirate hats optional.

To Add a panel:
Email me to make changes or put in a panel or event. FIRST COME, FIRST SERVED. Make up your own stuff, find your own panelists. PANELS ARE ONE HOUR - unless you want to arm-wrestle one of the other panel moderators on the Facebook site. 

Gaming: Gaming has gotten so fun and noisy it will have to be on the porch. But the porch is open and needs plastic to block off the wind - and this will let you go all night, after I need to lock up the hall. So get some cheap rolls of painting plastic, or contact me about what you plan to do. Jerry says we can use hooks if we don't wreck the place (those threatening to turn the porch into a medieval great hall - we'll just get out of your way). Since we do have the whole Winter-Summer Inn, gamers might want to consider staying in the upstairs suite, which is a huge bargain, and will let you party all night if you want. But for everything, you HAVE to let me know by February 11, or you can lose these options.

Security: Absolutely do not leave any outside doors open unless Donna Barr KNOWS it, and why.

Participant Details:

2015 Clallam Bay Comicon

Stickers will again be available. Only a dollar -
Dealers and Panel participants get one for free.
EVERYONE WELCOME. If you make or enjoy any sort of books - including comics - movies, music, poetry, cosplay, Steampunk, gallery art, jewelry, paint cars, bake pies, sing, do stand-up, sculpture, hip-hop, light shows, make frybread, whatever - bring it. Everybody welcome for the 10:00 am Saturday parade starting from the Weel Road Deli (Shell parking lot). 

Note: "We" = Donna Barr. Please everybody hit the bottom of this page for the - ahem - contractual agreements. No way we're mailing out stupid paper contracts for everybody.

First, con reports:
Former year Facebook pages: Construct search as: (Year) Clallam Bay Comicon. IE: 2013 Clallam Bay Comicon, etc.

Now - the 2015 information: 

FACEBOOK LINK (If you want to keep up with ongoing discussions, ask questions, organize a sales rep or living space or panels, yada yada).

July 11-12: During and after Clallam Bay/Sekiu Fun Days 10:00 am - 5 pm Both Saturday and Sunday. 

ADMISSION for public: free. "We don't need no stinkin' badges." You're all special guests to us. And don't have to prove you're pros or amateurs.

BOOTH FEES: $25 ($27.00 Paypal).  CONTACT for payment instructions. You're just renting space, so stick all the people on that table you want. Shipping Over Canadian Border: Shipit2PA

The newly renovated building - nice job, Lions!
90 Bogachiel Street
Clallam Bay, Olympic Peninsula, Washington State, United States (Take Highway 112 through Clallam Bay. After the hard left, look for liqour store on the right; Bogachiel Street is the next left). Hall, table space, toilet, kitchen, outside lawn, parking.

I am not renting the attached fire hall. If YOU want to for events, studios, or Evil Lair, contact me for Lion's Club hookups. DEADLINE for contacting me for all building, etc: February 11, 2015. GAMES: You want games? Find a Gamesmaster and contact us to be put in the Panel schedule, and get details for windproofing the porch.

MINIONS: If you want to do something at the show, go ahead. Our official movie is "Despicable Me," My official title is "Gru," and if you get yourself hurt or arrested, we'll just laugh and point.

PANELS and EVENTS Link First come, first gets to have their say!

GUESTS: We have no badge fees to deduct, and the tables are cheap, and in our eyes, everybody is special but equal. We're so "ridiculously fun" - and, as we grow, profitable - that everybody's going to show up anyway, just to say they did. Cheap darn housing, too.

AWARDS: Who are we to judge? If your fans love you and buy stuff, you win. If they don't, start marketing your ass better. Watch and learn.

ACCOMADATIONS AND HOUSING OFFICIAL CONVENTION HOTEL: Winter-Summer Inn Bed and Breakfast 360 963 2264 Held for FRIDAY-SATURDAY ONLY; make arrangements for Sunday night. We don't have a "party floor." We have a "party SUITE." The upstairs suite - with the fabulous view and balcony - has room for 7 party animals, with nice beds or fold-outs. AND a fireplace for our cool nights and ghost stories. With its own bathroom and kitchen. The whole suite is very reasonably priced, and a party crowd could get it cheap. 
Get your ass in gear - the inn only has so many rooms, and if they're not filled by February 11, 2015, Sandy will start to rent them out to other people!!! She's looking forward to us but she has a business to run. 
Andre's Court Motel: nice rooms, local. Limited space. 
Sam's RV Resort has camping, $15 a night. Includes laundromat, near upper shopping area; Phone: 360 963 2402 
MORE places. But you'll need a car for most of them.


COMICON EATS: We have a NICE kitchen available, so if you want to bring and sell food, take care of your own licensing or whatever. Or, if you're a participant, and just want to cook - we have a 'fridge and ovens and coffee pots. Potlucks and Sharesies welcome.

HOW TO GET HERE: Take a flight to Port Angeles on Kenmore Air, then take the Forks bus to the the Clallam Bay connection at Sappho; Bus details at Clallam Transit. Or take Olympic Bus Lines from Seattle. Best drive from Seattle: come in on 101, go out on 112 for all the views and fun. Coming from Portland, or other points south? Take the WEST side of the Olympic Peninsula, Highway 101, up through Forks; recommended to Twilight fans. Note: some folks may be planning a bus rock road trip, or a caravan. Go to the Facebook Page to start contacting and planning.

BUSSES IN-COUNTY: $3.00 passes for all-day, hop-on, hop-off service in Clallam County. Lots of routes and scheduling. Schedules, etc.

WI-FI is 24/7 at the library, right around the corner, also at various businesses and the Visitors' Center.

FIRE DISPLAYS: If you want to play Burning Man, contact the District Five Fire Department

LAST-MINUTE PRINTING: Already on the peninsula and forgot something? Need a large print order at the last minute? Olympic Printers are the guys.

CHILDREN: watch your own. Parents, please see * below. 

TRASH: Container in Lion's Club kitchen. SEPARATE THE CANS.

FACILITY CARE: No tape of any sort on the wall. Respect the Lion's Club's wall displays. We all chip in to clean up at the end of the show. It don't take long.

Don't set yourself on fire.

EXHIBITORS (Listed once paid $25 to convention; the sooner you pay for a table, the nearer the front of the hall you're placed):

1: Donna Barr's A Fine Line Press AND Clallam Bay Comicon Central.


*On-Line Contract: If you attend as a dealer or performer, we'll assume you've read this page's information, and will use it to make your life easier - and it CAN change, up to the start of the show, and possibly afterwards, if we need to. No whining if you don't know the schedule; if we get no notification, we'll just replace you on the spot. Life goes on. Parents, please note your obligations as breeding units.

Sunday, July 13, 2014

2014 Clallam Bay Comicon Fun Commences

The gang's arriving!
The fun has started. First on Friday, with folks showing up and setting up the Lion's Club hall. 

A few of us were in the Fun Days parade on Saturday. But the real fun started that evening at the Fun Days fireworks. What the heck - we decided these were the opening ceremonies!  

Fun Days Parade!
The fog was so thick that we couldn't see the high, traditional blasts, but the fireworkers did themselves proud with ground work, including waves of red flame blasting up out the bay, reflected in the water below. 

Cookout, loads of beach fireworks everybody got half price at the Nations. Too damn' much fun.

Panelists, dealers, musicians and fans. And cordite smoke.
No, wait... people are already talking about "Next year?" Oh. Hell.

Roberta Gregory and I hit the Zombie Challenge, and you'll see the two posts - two very frightened kids - at these two posts:

Roberta: "Here?"

Me: "Good and Bad Shit" 

We have lots of fun panels, and we find ourselves with allies and converts. Scared, bullied nerds stand up straight and can't wait until next year. Fishermen bring their kids and get on board for the environment. A bad old-style logger tries his stuff on us - and it does not work.

My panel, on how to run a Comicon, takes 15 minutes, including questions: "Find a dry, secure space with a bathroom and look at the Comicon link at donnabarr.com" This is why I'll never get hired as a teacher - I figure out the basics really fast, and then just get out of the way.

As usual, I had to show off my Ka-Blam Shirt.

Dara, and Kitting out a Sound Studio Cheap.

And whether I like it or not, I suddenly find myself with minions, all of them wanting to do cool things for next year's Comicon. So.... I guess we're doing it in 2015. Oy. Just call me Gru - and all these people "Jerry" and "Dave." What up?j

At this point, the post-con report becomes mostly a photo blog. 

Are we a music festival, yet?

Dara manages to meet up with Jerry of the Lion's Club after the concert, and scopes out the old fire hall for future use as a - recording studio? Concert Hall? Evil Lair? 

Next Year's Evil Lair?

The hall at con's end - cleaner than when we started.

We nailed the WHOLE Winter-Summer's Inn for 2015!
We lock down the entire Winter-Summer Inn, gorgeous upper studio and views and kitchen and all, and Sandy, the owner, is so happy. Yes, next year, she wants to come to the post-con horror movie party, to kick off the Hallowe'en season. Because Hallowe'en can't start too early up here.

Roberta and I and what are left of the gang are driving back to Port Angeles for breakfast, then they go on to Seattle, and I get some apples for Dan and come back on the bus.
Joyce Store has everything!

Last day: After we hit the Joyce store on Highway 112, and I play native guide all the way down (pointing out log cabins and rivers and bits of local gossip and such), we go to the CornerHouse in Port Angeles for a fabulous breakfast. We're talking omelets full of green onions if you want 'em, and a bottomless coffee pot. 

We get the Class Weirdo in the form of a very fun waitress, who makes sure we know all about the Pacific Northwest Tree Octopus (those 50-pounders are especially dangerous), and definitely wants to be mentioned for the 2015 show.

Torsten and the Older Than You 'fridge
After Roberta and Torsten Adair (Barnes and Noble) take off for Seattle, me and Linden Cook, of Project Wonderful, do a quick walking tour of downtown Port Angeles. She gets her very first Dairy Queen Dilly Bar (mint-chocolate). Cultural experiences.

After she leaves on the Vancouver Ferry, I to Safeway to get Dan his apples. Then I face the bus ride to the library and then all the way home. 

Last Selfie of the Con
But I can't really face the library run. So, I drop in to the Lost Moon Pub. Where I say that I am exhausted, dizzy and sick to my stomach. We're talking post-con tired. What do they have?

Of their array of locally-brewed artisan beers, Marie the bar-keep gives me a taste of "Fiddler's Green" - light ale, with green tea and jasmine. My whole body says, "Yes!" So the Lost Moon will have to be added to favorite Comicon places to hit. 

"Comicon...." Hmmm.... we have to come up with a new name for this show. Because it's so much more. 

Pacific Northwest Tree Octopus
There. Con report done. Next: setting up the show for 2015.

And don't ask me what's going to be in it - Gru does not know what the minions are up to.

But they left grinning....


Wednesday, June 18, 2014

Department of Horrible Secrets - Sex, Comics and Gaming

I've long realized that there's a corollary to Murphy's Law - "If anything can go wrong, it will." Barr's Corollary is: "And it will happen to me."

But that's so I'll FIX it.

It's no secret I think men are goofball, and often dangerously so. But more and more women - and men - are beginning to know that, and account for it. The Red Green Show made 15 seasons off of that. And it was guys writing that. Let's call it insider knowledge. 

I've been over on Facebook making smartass comments about guys getting out of line - everything from our volunteer career military and their advertising catches to guys stoning another girl to death for having a Facebook account - and I'm unashamedly a Feminist, because I ain't giving up my vote, not any time soon, no matter how hard anybody tries.

Anyway, there's this little group of trolls that evidently gives professionals in the entertainment industry a hard time - or try, anyway. They can't really, because those of us who are the real thing don't know anybody who care about them. We only know the People Who Count, and that includes among our fans. They're not easily fooled.

So, a dumb thing happened online - I'm a small-d democrat and will talk to anybody, even bad interviewers -  and I was having fun looking silly, and drinking while I was at it, because I'm German and to us being inebriated is a sacred state, and that's as good excuse as any.

But then this particular group of trolls lost their minds over me being a Feminist. I think they got a little unnerved when I said every father of a daughter was a feminist, and not to cross those guys. 

Then, about 3/4 of the way through the interview - and I totally blew it off as stupid - they started fixating on boy rape. We're talking intently making up nasty scenarios about raping a boy with a champagne bottle. I tried to steer the conversation away from it, but they'd locked their brains onto it, and if I hadn't been forgivingly inebriated, I should have just hung up on 'em.

I've been trying to figure out why this particular troll puddle is bothering me. I'm no big celebrity. Yeah, yeah, worldwide, for years, more and new people discover my work and love it, no matter what detractors - and they are few - try to say about me. My work and works speak for themselves. My tree has good fruit. So why bother with me? 

I woke up realizing that this links into the way women and girls are treated in the comics industry. In every single society that despises and tries to lock up or control women or girls, the men are trying to get their hands on the boys. To use them, kill them, or have them available for sex. Look at all the patriarchal religions - if they're not backing the altar boys into the vestry, they're torturing baby penises to fixate the poor kids for the rest of their lives, or stoning any girl who has a Facebook account before heading back to their boy servants. 

Are the full-grown things raping the boys in the back of the comic shops? Doubtful. But traditional superhero and gaming fans are teaching boys to hate and fear women and girls. The attitude spreads into society, as comics and gaming grow. Boys become increasingly vulnerable, as do girls, and the trolls who see women and girls standing up against that abuse as threatening their access to the boys. Why else go so insane over the mere approach of a girl to a game? Power doesn't even explain it; it's a sexual threat. No wonder this small group has lost their shit over me.

The healthiest superhero company in comics is Prism Comics. They unabashedly admit the joy of men being sexual with one another. Gay comics authors produce images of happy, joyful sex, with no threats to anybody. They're not turning any kids who come to them into woman-haters. In fact, they wish more women would sign up for their booth full of happy people. And they admit what the superhero genre is about, after all - boys admiring full-grown, sexy men. Not pederasty, damnit - but the admission that, when they were kids, they loved those costumes and those muscles. 

In fact, I've seen lost children show up at the Prism booth at conventions, and wait until their adults get found. Kids feel safe at the Prism booth, because nobody's making anybody hate on anybody, or exclude them, for whatever reason.

No, I'm not sharing any names or projects of the abusers. Let them fade back into their own small group. Nobody who counts cares about what they do; we're too busy having fun. But parents might want to stop just dropping their kid off at the comic shop. You never know if they're going to a bad one.

I hope I've fixed that - and I'm using the word like it would scare a dog.

Originally posted later, under "Sifting Out The Stalkers"

Recently, I did a dumb-shit radio interview while I was drunk.

Now, in the entertainment world, we creatives can get drunk off our asses, and nobody hurts anybody else. Nobody gropes, or attempts to rape, or uses drunkenness as an excuse. Dark Horse once put on a party that could have been seen as a Creative Vision Quest, or a Really Stupid Idea, depending on the attendees. They rented a suite, and filled the hot tub full of ice and bottles of some pretty decent beer. Then they let the creatives loose on it.

All I remember is having a lovely time. Somebody says me and a fellow comics creative professional - a woman - were in one of those eye-locked brain-to-brain fests, talking about... well, godlets know what. Probably distributors or print shops, if I know us. But neither of us remember it. No, guys, drunk women don't start kissing like in your fantasy - they eye-lock and blather and laugh really hard.

And not another person there took advantage of us while we were high. Not man, woman, young or old. We were completely safe.

During the radio interview, I got side-swiped, by people who had obviously planned it. The first thing they did was to try to claim there were No Feminists in Comics. While I was still going, "WTF?" they turned it around to all of us going and getting a beer. I was all for that; you can distract me from anything by bringing up alcohol. After all, my fellow creatives won't do anything bad to me.

But halfway through - when I was nicely buzzed - I discovered that one of the people on the interview was a person who is known as an entertainment-industry stalker. 

I should have simply hung up in the middle of the interview. But I'll talk to anybody, I was in the happy condition of trust that alcohol puts me into, and I tried to ignore him and his friends fixating on his balls and shit. 

And then they brought the story around to some school teacher who'd had it off with a student. I made a sarcastic remark or two, mostly about how they were equating what was admittedly stupid on the teacher's part, with brutal,  controlling rape: "I mean, what did she use? A beer bottle?" This is not downgrading adult interference with a child, but when a man rapes a woman, he doesn't need a beer bottle - although he may turn to one, for inebriation and tearing.

Since then, I've had more stalkers showing up, trying to use the interview on me. But is all to the good. Anybody - including on their comments page - who sides with them - are people who, on Facebook and at conventions, that we are forewarned about. Anti-feminists. Guys who hate women being at comicons except as tits to grab if they get the chance.

I have a lot of decent friends in this industry, and none of them would have done such a thing to anybody. But now we can watch these morons out themselves. And defriend them, and warn each other about them. 

Stalk me, you stupid fuckers. Why not just paint a virtual target on your own forehead? And now everybody knows who you are, and who you associate with.

Yes, you have Freedom of Association - but if you hang out with the Klan, I think I'd warn all my black friends about you.

(I caught one of them the first day I posted this, and everybody saw her (him?) try it on. So now everybody's warned. Works!)